How to choose and apply pressure sensitive adhesives?


Today we take a look at pressure sensitive adhesives. We will also introduce you to a player in silicone-based pressure sensitive adhesives. 

Some Adhesion System Basics

To select a pressure-sensitive adhesive, consider environmental, surface, drywall estimate appearance and performance requirements. First, you must consider the environment in which your product will be used. Depending on the end use, you may need a product that is resistant to temperature, ultraviolet radiation, water, oils, solvents or even plasticizers. You also need to consider appearance as you may need a clear product. In order to optimize the adhesive contact, the surface must be dry and clean. Contact pressure is necessary as it will promote the contact of the adhesive with the substrate. Finally, the duration of the pressure and the temperature will increase the surface contact and the quality of the adhesion.

Some examples of known pressure sensitive adhesives

  • RUBBER adhesives. They are known for their high adhesion to polar and non-polar base materials. They are also recognized for their medium to low shear strength.  If their temperature resistance is average, their resistance to humidity is excellent, and let’s say “good” for polar solvents. The life of rubber adhesives is rather average.  
  • ACRYLIC adhesives. These adhesives have a good basic adhesion. They are known to have high shear strength and temperature resistance. Regarding humidity and solvent resistance, again they are considered to be excellent. Their lifespan is impressive. 
  • SILICONE adhesives. Silicone-based adhesives are known for their resistance to extreme exposure in all climates and environments. They stick particularly well to surfaces that are difficult to wet. They are products that age well and can be easily removed without leaving residue.

Focus on silicone-based pressure sensitive adhesives

Silicone-based PSAs can be formulated to meet very specific needs and specifications in very different applications. Because of their versatility and performance potential, companies are placing a high value on this type of adhesive. ELKEM is constantly looking for new and innovative formulations to meet the needs of industries. If you are looking for silicone-based PSAs, we invite you to visit their website:

Some tips on how to use your Pressure Sensitive Adhesives

The application and performance conditions of a pressure sensitive adhesive depend to a large extent on factors such as: temperature, humidity, light and UV, dust, solvents, chemical fumes… storage conditions, time of application, specific use of the adhesive part or assembly.  Excessive moisture can be absorbed by the release paper and cause bubbles and wrinkles, dusting and eventual drying out and deterioration of the adhesive. The ideal application temperature is between 20 and 40°C. The application of adhesive tape on a surface with a temperature below 10° C is not recommended. Indeed, the adhesive becomes too firm to adhere quickly (except product adapted to cold surfaces). However, the bond is satisfactory at low temperatures once the tape is applied normally. Final adhesion of an adhesive tape is generally obtained after 72 hours. However, the rise in temperature can shorten this time. A firm application pressure increases the adhesion and thus the holding power. We recommend the use of a roller or a squeegee for this purpose.

We invite you to contact a professional for more information and advice.